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2006 Toyota Sienna - VSC gone wild

Our 2006 Sienna XLE with 192,000 miles will occasionally have the Vehicle Stability Control (VSC) sensor go on when driving. Typically this occurs when going around a modest curve or slight dip in the road at posted speeds. The sensor causes an audible alarm and in some cases the vehicle will start to brake and the steering wheel will “lock” for a very short time (about 2 to 3 seconds). It is very un-nerving when this sensor comes on. The Toyota dealership believes this issue is due to the rack and pinion needing replacement which would cost more than the car is worth. I read somewhere that parking the car on a flat surface with the wheels straight and then disconnecting the battery can “reset” the vehicle sensor. I tried this and it seemed to work for maybe 9 months before the VSC came on again.

Does anyone else have experience with this issue and possible economical solutions.

Thanks!

I have had this problem when my battery got weak and needed replacement. New battery, all gone.

Based on what you posted, the dealer likely thinks the steering sensor on the rack has worn out. The false signals to the VSC are causing the system to try and “save” you from a skid or spin that is not happening. The sensor itself is available separately but costs $300 on Rock-Auto. A new rack, which I doubt you need, is another $300. You don’t need a dealer to replace these.

The cheap solution is to look in your owners manual, find the a fuse labeled VSC and remove it. Start the car and see if the VSC light comes on and stays on. If it does, there is your cheap solution. The system will no longer help you but it won’t hurt you either.

You may only find one labeled VSC/ABS or just the ABS fuse. Pull that and you will no longer have ABS or VSC.

You also likely will have additional legal liability in a crash because those systems have been disabled so consider that in your decision.

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